Palo Alto Networks Sets New 52-Week High Following Analyst Upgrade (PANW)
Palo Alto Networks (NASDAQ:PANW) shares reached a new 52-week high during trading on Monday after Morgan Stanley raised their price target on the stock from $90.00 to $105.00, AnalystRatingsNetwork.com reports. Morgan Stanley currently has a top pick rating on the stock. Palo Alto Networks traded as high as $85.63 and last traded at $85.51, with a volume of 2,099,781 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $81.21.
The analysts wrote, “PANW Remains a Top Pick for 2014, our favorite play on the secular trend towards consolidated network security functionality. “Several factors bolster our confidence in the company’s ability to sustain 30%+ billings growth and 45%+ FCF growth in FY15: 1) multiple product cycles ramping into FY15, 2) strong positioning for the core consolidation trend, 3) an improving margin trend post FY15 and 4) slower growth in capex and the reduction in litigation expense. PANW currently trades at 0.7x EV/FCF to growth, well below the >2x EV/FCF for our ‘hyper growth’ names or 1.2x for our entire universe. A multiple more in line with growth would suggest PANW closer to our new price target of $105.”
A number of other analysts have also recently weighed in on PANW. Analysts at Dougherty & Co initiated coverage on shares of Palo Alto Networks in a research note on Thursday. They set a “buy” rating and a $95.00 price target on the stock. Separately, analysts at Zacks downgraded shares of Palo Alto Networks from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 25th. They now have a $76.80 price target on the stock. Finally, analysts at Cowen and Company reiterated a “market perform” rating on shares of Palo Alto Networks in a research note on Thursday, May 29th. They now have a $80.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $70.00. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating, twelve have issued a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $83.51.
In other Palo Alto Networks news, Director Carl M. Eschenbach sold 6,496 shares of the stock on the open market in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $80.86, for a total value of $525,266.56. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link.
The stock’s 50-day moving average is $72.74 and its 200-day moving average is $67.49. The company’s market cap is $6.572 billion.
Palo Alto Networks (NASDAQ:PANW) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, May 28th. The company reported $0.11 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters consensus estimate of $0.10 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $150.70 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $146.13 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.06 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 48.8% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts expect that Palo Alto Networks will post $0.40 EPS for the current fiscal year.
Palo Alto Networks, Inc offers a network security platform that allows enterprises, service providers, and government entities to secure their networks.
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